Perfect your practise- A new category I’m working on to help you improve on certain techniques, goals and techniques! I’m starting with the topic I get asked most about- How to build your abs! And in particular, this post is about core endurance. Endurance means how long you can sustain something for. For example, being able to do lots of sit ups is very different from being able to hold a plank position. Both equally important and challenging, however the endurance exercises are the ones we all tend to avoid/dread/hate/you get the idea!
Endurance tasks are often the hardest because they demand muscle activity CONSTANTLY! Whereas repetitive exercises can (wrongly!) incorporate momentum, or other muscle groups to help when the key muscles are fatiguing. Regardless of how strong you are, you always need endurance too. So go on, face the burn and try these 4 simple core endurance exercises!
Instructions: For exercises 1,3 and 4 see how long you can hold your position, maintaining technique and core engagement throughout! Time trial challenge: 30 seconds, 60 seconds? For exercise No 2. the aim is to lower one for to toe tap the floor slowly, alternating feet, and aim for the same time trial duration. Once you have your time for each, repeat the circuit twice!
1) HUNDREDS: Quickly beat the arms up and down (as if splashing puddles). Keep the head elevated if its comfortable, or lower down if it gets strained. Legs must remain at a strong 90 degrees position and the lower back should be flat the the mat.
2) SCISSORS: Lower back flattens to the mat. Start in the same position as No 1. Slowly lower one foot down and toe tap the floor. Then return to the start and tap down the opposite foot.
3) V-SITTING: Hold this V-shape. Ensure your back doesn’t slouch. If it’s too much you can bend the knees to 90 degrees. Make it harder- toe tap one foot to the floor and back, whilst holding this position.
4) SIDE PLANK: Hold this side position with your shoulder over the wrist and hips stacked on top of each other. Keep raising the lower waist side upwards to work the obliques. Make it harder- raise the top arm overhead, or raise the top leg upwards and continue holding.
Use my TRAINING PLANNER to record how long you hold each exercise for and compare it every week for a month to see your progress!